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Bear Coffee Co announce opening date of Derby branch

Expansion is part of ambitious plans for Uttoxeter entrepreneurs

One of Uttoxeter's biggest high street success stories is continuing as the bosses of a popular coffee house near the opening night of their second branch.

Since opening in 2016, Bear Coffee Co has thrived in High Street, despite competition from established brands like Costa and Starbucks in town.

Now founders Craig Bunting and Michael Thorley, who are both former Thomas Alleyne's High School pupils, are set to open up a new coffee house in Derby. The store, in the city's Iron Gate area, will serve its first customers on Friday, December 1.

And Craig and Michael's expansion will be the start of an ambitious campaign to open 30 branches across the UK in the next five years. The pair have promised to "redefine the cafe-bar experience in Derby" with their new outlet.

Craig Bunting and Michael Thorley

Craig said: "We are delighted to be expanding to Derby, the city where Michael and I shopped and skateboarded as kids.

"Our vision is to combine better coffee during the day with an alternative bar experience in the evenings – served by skilled, passionate staff.

"We have worked hard to ensure that Bear is part of a growing movement that breaks the mould and offers a unique and addictive vibe."

A Bear spokesman said: "Until recently, coffee shops and bars have been strangers attracting different clientele.

"However, a developing trend to combine the finest coffee along with the best in brunch and lunch style dining during the day, and then slide effortlessly into cocktails, craft beers, wines and informal dining during the evening is at the forefront of the vision for Bear.

"A trend that is already present in Europe, Australasia and America, Bear feels certain that the UK is ready for this movement, and we’re more than ready to lead the way.

"Bear is a coffee shop, kitchen and bar, providing a new, all-day dining experience with an ethos of perfection that stems from their passion for great coffee - a passion that is evident in everything we do."

The company is working to expand first throughout the Midlands and then beyond.

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